A Newbie 8 Weeks Later….5 lessons learned

Thoughts and input on anything related to wet shaving or men's grooming.
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BklynBoy
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A Newbie 8 Weeks Later….5 lessons learned

Post by BklynBoy »

Well guys, it was mid July when I started wet shaving the ‘old timey’ way and August when I first posted. I have just had a week of perfect shaves and thought it was time to thank you all for your contributions to my knowledge and give something back to other newb’s, so here goes:

1. Do not start with an adjustable Yes, all you ‘shavin mavins’ tell everyone to start with a Merkur HD and yes I ignored your good advice by buying a Progress and yes, I started with too aggressive a setting and paid for it with razor burn. Fortunately, I now have the Progress set on two, put in fresh Israeli Personas every 5 days or so and am getting close, irritation free shaves.

2. Minimize the variables: In the past 8 weeks I have acquired: two brushes, 2 scuttles/shave mugs, full size or samples of 8 different shave creams or soaps, 5 kinds of blades, 4 kinds of preshaves and 2 kinds of aftershaves. Add this to the adjustable variations on my razor and it was too many variables, leading to an inability to diagnose the problem when I was not getting a great shave. I have settled on the Trumper Rose, Coral Skin Food and the Israeli blades for a week now and will slowly experiment with other things, one at a time.

3. Preshave is the elixir of life:
I have been shaving with a blade and cream for 35 years and never used a preshave before. (except for Williams Lectric Shave in my peach fuzz electric days) It makes all the difference between good and bad shaves. I have found that both the Proraso and Trumpers work very well even though the ones I am using are technically aftershaves. They work better for me than the Em’s preshave or Jojoba which are intended to be preshaves.

4. Trumpers rules:
In my first batch of shaving products, I bought a tube of Trumpers Rose and then upon request Trumpers sent me samples of four other shave creams and two skin foods. At the same time, I was refused samples by Trufitt and Taylors. I just ordered a tub of Trumpers Rose and a large Coral Skin Food. As a businessman I can appreciate smart marketing and stupid marketing decisions. Trumpers had made it easier for me to become a loyal customer and Trufitt/Taylors have made it harder. I understand that Trufitt and Taylors are fine products and the next time I get to London, New York or Las Vegas where I can smell and touch them I will probably buy some, but Trumpers reduced the barrier to becoming a customer of theirs.

5. A good brush is a luxury, not a necessity:
I started with a $12 Proraso boar brush from Target and then got a $42 badger brush from Em’s. I love the badger brush’s feel and it does whip shaving cream faster, but I can get as good a shave from the boar brush. So for those who are trying to do this on a budget, I think you can avoid the expense of an expensive brush for a while without impairing your ability to get a good, shave. Spend your money on good shaving creams, preshaves and blades first
Gary
Leisureguy

Post by Leisureguy »

Try using the Coral Skin Food as an every-pass pre-shave, applying a few drops to your wet beard just before lathering for that pass. Or you can use 100% glycerine to much the same effect. This technique was discovered by our own Dr. Moss.
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Post by Bob »

Excellent advice, Gary. I suspect that several other beginning wetshavers are going to see this post and benefit highly from it.
--Bob--
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nteeman
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Post by nteeman »

I have also learned here that hair conditioner is a great pre-shave. I use it before I hot-towel my face, then again before I lather, then again before I re-lather in-between passes. It makes a big difference!
:roll:
-Neal (DE user since 1998)
I shave therefore I am

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kd7kip
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Re: A Newbie 8 Weeks Later….5 lessons learned

Post by kd7kip »

BklynBoy wrote:4. Trumpers rules: In my first batch of shaving products, I bought a tube of Trumpers Rose and then upon request Trumpers sent me samples of four other shave creams and two skin foods. At the same time, I was refused samples by Trufitt and Taylors. I just ordered a tub of Trumpers Rose and a large Coral Skin Food. As a businessman I can appreciate smart marketing and stupid marketing decisions. Trumpers had made it easier for me to become a loyal customer and Trufitt/Taylors have made it harder. I understand that Trufitt and Taylors are fine products and the next time I get to London, New York or Las Vegas where I can smell and touch them I will probably buy some, but Trumpers reduced the barrier to becoming a customer of theirs.
Oh so true. I have owned or tried several Taylors and T&H cremes: several are very fine, some did not thrill me in the least, but few if any equal Trumper's, and none surpass. YMMV!

Good post Gary!

-Scott
Dumb as a stump and twice as ugly...
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rahul325
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Post by rahul325 »

i am surprised the T&H refused samples, they normally send more than u ask for.

strange.
Wet shaving is an expensive addiction :twisted:

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Blue As A Jewel
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Re: A Newbie 8 Weeks Later….5 lessons learned

Post by Blue As A Jewel »

BklynBoy wrote:Well guys, it was mid July when I started wet shaving the ‘old timey’ way and August when I first posted. I have just had a week of perfect shaves and thought it was time to thank you all for your contributions to my knowledge and give something back to other newb’s, so here goes:

1. Do not start with an adjustable Yes, all you ‘shavin mavins’ tell everyone to start with a Merkur HD and yes I ignored your good advice by buying a Progress and yes, I started with too aggressive a setting and paid for it with razor burn. Fortunately, I now have the Progress set on two, put in fresh Israeli Personas every 5 days or so and am getting close, irritation free shaves.

2. Minimize the variables: In the past 8 weeks I have acquired: two brushes, 2 scuttles/shave mugs, full size or samples of 8 different shave creams or soaps, 5 kinds of blades, 4 kinds of preshaves and 2 kinds of aftershaves. Add this to the adjustable variations on my razor and it was too many variables, leading to an inability to diagnose the problem when I was not getting a great shave. I have settled on the Trumper Rose, Coral Skin Food and the Israeli blades for a week now and will slowly experiment with other things, one at a time.

3. Preshave is the elixir of life:
I have been shaving with a blade and cream for 35 years and never used a preshave before. (except for Williams Lectric Shave in my peach fuzz electric days) It makes all the difference between good and bad shaves. I have found that both the Proraso and Trumpers work very well even though the ones I am using are technically aftershaves. They work better for me than the Em’s preshave or Jojoba which are intended to be preshaves.

4. Trumpers rules:
In my first batch of shaving products, I bought a tube of Trumpers Rose and then upon request Trumpers sent me samples of four other shave creams and two skin foods. At the same time, I was refused samples by Trufitt and Taylors. I just ordered a tub of Trumpers Rose and a large Coral Skin Food. As a businessman I can appreciate smart marketing and stupid marketing decisions. Trumpers had made it easier for me to become a loyal customer and Trufitt/Taylors have made it harder. I understand that Trufitt and Taylors are fine products and the next time I get to London, New York or Las Vegas where I can smell and touch them I will probably buy some, but Trumpers reduced the barrier to becoming a customer of theirs.

5. A good brush is a luxury, not a necessity:
I started with a $12 Proraso boar brush from Target and then got a $42 badger brush from Em’s. I love the badger brush’s feel and it does whip shaving cream faster, but I can get as good a shave from the boar brush. So for those who are trying to do this on a budget, I think you can avoid the expense of an expensive brush for a while without impairing your ability to get a good, shave. Spend your money on good shaving creams, preshaves and blades first
1. Probably true - but if you can overcome the urge to fiddle, and do as you have done the adjustable is my preferred way to go. Although the HD is a great razor too!

2. YEP! There was a while back when I was experiementing with different blades - my face looked like it had gone through a war zone.

3. Yep! Although I'm not surprised the Jojoba Oil didn't work as well as a PS.

4. Very surprised that T&H refused samples - contact Brittany in Customer Service -

5. Agreed. A few extras minutes with a boar brush or entry level badger will yield great results.

Great observations - should do a follow up at the 6-month mark!
- Ravi -

You can mistrust me less than you can mistrust him. Trust me.
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BklynBoy
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Post by BklynBoy »

Looks like I need to try T&H for samples again.

Thanks for the contact info
Gary
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Laney1566
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Post by Laney1566 »

Trumpers is great, but there is alot to be said for a good tub of Taylors. Very economical. Try "Shave Shop". Good Stuff :D
Laney
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yomuppet
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Post by yomuppet »

BklynBoy wrote:Looks like I need to try T&H for samples again.

Thanks for the contact info
T+H samples can also be obtained in Nordstrom's (at least here they can), along with AOS.

J
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Post by smoothshaver »

Thanks for sharing your observations. I especially agree with keeping the number of variables under control (I'm still in the "experimenting mode" myself :? .)

I, too, have been favorably impressed by Trumper's customer service. Good customer service does make a difference and should be encouraged.

Regarding my experience with samples: Taylor's said they no longer provide samples. I haven't heard yet from T & H (it's been two weeks since I made my request).

Ed
-Ed
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BklynBoy
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Post by BklynBoy »

J,

When I went to my local Nordstrom, they had never heard of T&H, Trumper or Taylors. All they had was AOS. I was surprised since I would assume the DC metro area would have perfect demographics for traditional shaving supplies, but there does not appear to be any retail outfit closer than Charlottesville Virginia that has a good range of shaving products
Gary
yomuppet
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Post by yomuppet »

BklynBoy wrote:J,

When I went to my local Nordstrom, they had never heard of T&H, Trumper or Taylors. All they had was AOS. I was surprised since I would assume the DC metro area would have perfect demographics for traditional shaving supplies, but there does not appear to be any retail outfit closer than Charlottesville Virginia that has a good range of shaving products
Hm... I have heard that not all Nordstrom's carry them. I do have T+H Ultimate Comfort and Taylor's Rose (both old and new formula), so feel free to send me a PM if you are interested in trading some samples.

J
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rtaylor61
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Post by rtaylor61 »

The Nordstrom's in Utah do not stock AOS, or the T&H products. I sent an email to customer service inquiring as to why, and they suggested I order from them online. I let them know that I would order online, but just not from them.

Randy
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BklynBoy
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Post by BklynBoy »

Randy, I sent Norstrom an email to the same effect and got the same response. I feel the same way;with all the online choice why would I order from Nordstrom?
Gary
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Post by SteveK »

Gary,

Which is your local Nordstrom? I would assume it's Tyson's Corner. I haven't been there in over a month, but they definitely did carry T&H, as does the one in Montgomery Mall in Bethesda. They moved all the Men's shaving/fragrance items to the Men's section some time ago, rather than the women's cosmetic section where they previously resided.

FYI, either Nordstrom's or Bloomingdales (can't remember which) also carried the Aqua di Parma line, as does the Grooming Lounge in Tyson's II.

Steve
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BklynBoy
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Post by BklynBoy »

Steve, I went to the men's counter in the women's cosmetics section in the Tyson's store. I didn't know they had additional shaving supplies in the men's section. I'll look for it the next time I am there

Thank you for the head's up
Gary
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ichabod
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Post by ichabod »

BklynBoy wrote:Steve, I went to the men's counter in the women's cosmetics section in the Tyson's store. I didn't know they had additional shaving supplies in the men's section. I'll look for it the next time I am there

Thank you for the head's up
My local Nordstrom has the shaving creams etc. in what should, by rights, be called the gentleman's haberdashery section. Nestled amongst the undershirts and ties.
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BklynBoy
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Post by BklynBoy »

Ah Ha, meandering around town this weekend, I found two outlets for T&H.

Across the street from J&R Cigars on L Street and 17th in Washington is one of the outlets of the Grooming Lounge. I went in there after picking up a box of cigars at J&R and found they had a few of the T&H products and a few other boutique shave creams, but they did not have a cream version of the 1805 scent that I decided I liked. This is a strange place, they charge $50 for a shave but shave you with - are you ready for this - a Gillette M3 Turbo. Sacrilege, no ?

Then, based on the advice of a few of you dc area shavin mavins, I went back to Nordstrom, this time in Bethesda and found a large selection of T&H, Jack Black and a few other quality shaving brands. I ended up buying a tube of 1805 and one of the almond.

Thanks guys
Gary
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BklynBoy
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Apology to T&H

Post by BklynBoy »

It appears I cast a premature udgement about Truffit and Hill. Today I received a parcel from their Chicago office with samples of 5 fragrances and two shave creams. Mea Culpa
Gary
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